We are a not-for-profit organisation looking to raise money to buy much-needed equipment which will enable us to expand the delivery of equine assisted coaching, learning and development to the wider community. We are also raising money to convert one of our stables into a classroom and private consultation area.
About the project
We have found the most amazing location to base our organisation. Bwlchgwyn is the highest village in Wales and as such, has stunning views and beautiful countryside. We have chosen this location as we believe that the environment adds greatly to the quality of the service that we can provide.
We are very lucky to have had some great help already in the form of a lot of 'elbow grease' from a local volunteer group from Flintshire who very kindly painted the fence aroung our menege but there is still lots to do.
So what is Wisdom of Equus about?
Wisdom of Equus operates with the intention of providing equine enabled learning, coaching and development to the local and wider communities. We intend to deliver this service at the lowest rate possible in order to make the service more accessible to those in need. Equine enabled approaches have proven to be successful in helping:
- Children and adults affected by trauma, ADHD, Autism, Asperger’s etc.
- Vulnerable adults affected by domestic abuse, trauma, grief etc.
- Individuals affected by depression, low self-esteem, eating disorders etc.
- Ex-forces personnel with PTSD (post-traumatic stress disorder).
- Individuals increase their employability through learning life skills.
Our organisation can also provide outdoor or 'adventure' learning for primary school children, linked to core areas of the national curriculum. These activities are overseen by a fully qualified primary school teacher.
Why do we use horses?
Those who are familiar with horses recognize and understand the power of horses to influence people in incredibly powerful ways. Developing relationships, training, horsemanship instruction, and caring for horses naturally affects the people involved in a positive manner.
The benefits of work ethic, responsibility, assertiveness, communication, and healthy relationships has long been recognized. Horses naturally provide these benefits. The use of horses is growing and gaining popularity with the rise of Equine Assisted Psychotherapy and Equine Assisted Learning.
We are often asked, "Why horses? Why not other animals?"
Naturally intimidating to many, horses are large and powerful. This creates a natural opportunity for some to overcome fear and develop confidence. Working alongside a horse, in spite of those fears, creates confidence and provides wonderful insight when dealing with other intimidating and challenging situations in life.
Like humans, horses are social animals, with defined roles within their herds. They would rather be with their peers. They have distinct personalities, attitudes and moods; an approach that works with one horse won’t necessarily work with another. At times, they seem stubborn and defiant. They like to have fun. In other words, horses provide vast opportunities for metaphorical learning, an effective technique when working with even the most challenging individuals or groups.
Horses require us to work, whether in caring for them or working with them. In an era when immediate gratification and the "easy way" are the norm, horses require people to be engaged in physical and mental work to be successful, a valuable lesson in all aspects of life.
Most importantly, horses mirror human body language. Many complain, "This horse is stubborn. That horse doesn't like me," etc. The lesson is that if they change themselves, the horses respond differently. Horses are honest, which makes them especially powerful messengers.
Excerpt from: www.eagala.org/Information/Why_Horses
All of our horses and ponies are kept as naturally as possible and are barefoot (no shoes) and bitless. We manage them as naturally as we can and are only stabled if their welfare dictates it. We allow them to remain as a herd and they are a very happy bunch for it. We have very strict horse welfare and training guidelines which are tailored for each individual. They always have access to water even when being used as therapy ponies and are allowed to express their normal horsey behaviour which is vital if they are to be used in this manner. We never catch our ponies - they catch us!
I found out about Wisdom of Equus through Facebook. When I made enquiries about what they provided they were very professional and explained what the sessions involved. My little girl had come from a very traumatic situation and my husband and had I adopted her. When I found Wisdom of Equus, she had been with us for 18 months. She had a number of issues around confidence, trust, self-esteem and behaviour. She was 5 when we first started attending sessions with Lexi, one of the ponies. Since then, we have been attending on more or less a weekly basis and she has built up a relationship with the facilitator, Dawn and Lexi the pony. She loves to go and see them both and at the moment her favourite thing is to paint and draw on Lexi! Her confidence has blossomed and her eyes light up whenever Lexi's name is mentioned. I would recommend Wisdom of Equus to anyone who has difficulties with their children no matter what their circumstances. My daughter used to cling to my leg and not want to leave my side, now she is very confident to go and do things on her own and doesn't really like the idea of me being there! I take that as a positive step forward. She is very confident with Lexi and Dawn who she has gradually built a relationship with. There are weeks when she won't listen or do what she is told but Dawn has a very calming influence and is led by what my daughter would like to do. It is a therapeutic experience for me also and the bond between myself and my daughter is getting stronger. Thanks to Dawn and Wisdom of Equus we are slowly hoping all the negative things that have happened in my daughters' life will soon fade and all the positive experiences that we give her will make her a more trusting and confident little girl. (name witheld for client confidentiality).
What do we need?
As our organisation is in it's infancy we currently have very limited resources and equipment. In order to provide equine assisted activites to children and adults we do need to raise money to buy the following:
- Riding hats
- Bareback pads
- Equipment for games (hoops, nets, cones etc.)
- Timber to build a 'horsey' obstacle course
- Pond dipping equipment
- Chimes, bells, mirrors etc. for our sensory walk.
- Paints and teaching materials
- Top-up layer for outdoor school.
We are also hoping to raise a good amount towards converting one of the stables into a classroom. Having somewhere warm and dry to use during the winter months would mean that we would be able to run our equine assisted activites all year round. This would also provide us with a private area to use for initial consultations.
What will you get in return for your donation?
We are extremely grateful for any amount that is donated to our organisation and sincerely appreciate your generousity. We have given the rewards for donations very careful thought and we hope that you will enjoy at least one of the following in return.
£5 - Thank you for your support!
£10 - Personalised 'Thank You' letter for believing in our project.
£25 - 'Thank You' letter and quarterly newsletter with updates on our project and how we are helping the commuinity.
£50 - 'Thank You' letter, newsletter and your name on our 'Wall of Fame' at the side of our stable block.
£100 - 'Thank You' letter, newsletter, name on 'Wall of Fame' and a portrait of one of our EEA ponies.
£250 - 'Thank You' letter, newsletter, name on 'Wall of Fame', portrait and VIP invitations (x2) to our open day and Summer BBQ.
£500 - 'Thank You' letter, newsletter, name on 'Wall of Fame', portrait, VIP invitations and a 'Horse Experience Day' where you can experience the power of our equine partners for yourself (lunch included).
Donations from buisnesses:
We would be happy to include a link on our website for any donations received from businesses. For donations above £500 we would also be happy to print your logo and website address on our literature/flyers for a period of 12 months.